When we had dinner with our friend from Issou Coffee, we got in a pretty passionate conversation about modernism, Wabi-Sabi and Bauhaus. Afterward, they mentioned a little restaurant called "Koto Buki" and told us that it might inspire the thought of wabi-sabi. The restaurant takes lunch and dinner customers by reservations only... but we could drop in a coffee and cake.
Koto Buki was such a contrast to Senvus village we visited earlier the day. If we didn't know what we were looking for, we would have totally missed the entrance. After we parked our car, we walked up a small hill following wooden signs. We knew that the property was cared closely even though it didn't have a sense of perfectly manicured garden... and we also knew right away that it would be a good visit for us.
The presence of dark Japanese traditional house that quietly sits in the forest garden intimidated us to open the door... They had outdoor entrance then a small 3' x 10' space before there was another door to enter inside of the building. It felt like opening a precious box of treasure... unveiling one layer at a time. Inside was segmented into small areas for tables and tatami area. Each seating area had something special about it. We got seated in the corner spot where we could look out the window and see Tsubaki tree. It was full bloom with beautiful red flowers which fell to the ground at its fullest. The sound of falling Tsubaki flowers again reminded me of the impermanence of wabi-sabi concept. To fall when it is the most beautiful... and to accept the order of nature.
The dark interior space was curated beautifully with artifacts from different eras... When it is done right, darkness can be such a beautiful element in design.
I love the idea that we can't buy authentic beauty of wabi-sabi with money... We can copy and imitate the aesthetic but the true look and feel of Wabi-sabi takes time for materials to age, cared craftsmanship to withstand the wear and patience of people around it. Something FB and I talk a lot about when we discuss concept of the baum-kuchen collections.
It is one thing to read about wabi-sabi... but it is something else to actually be there to enjoy the wholeness of the concept. It was truly priceless... I was too busy breathing the moments so I borrowed few photos from FB to share. (last 6 photos are taken by FB:)
p.s. we loved the place so much that we decided to go back for lunch few days before we leave the island.